Sunday, March 20, 2011

A year of discovery_The gift that keeps on giving...

Well, spring is here, which always beckons the dawn of a new year for yours truly. Yep, it's my birthday. It sounds so cliche, but I am sitting here thinking about my 31st year and wondering where it went and how it zipped past me so quickly? I'm not sure what I have to show for this past year... I didn't buy a new house, get engaged/married, have a kid... you know, the normal stuff that people my age are doing at this point in their lives. And before you think I'm throwing myself a pity party, I must tell you that there has been a dramatic shift with in me over the course of this past year. For the better, in my opinion (let's hope). No, I may not be moving at the same speed as everyone else, with respect to life benchmarks (who cares, I don't*), but I can tell you that in this past year I have discovered more of myself - the good, bad, & ugly - which has proven to be one of the most valuable gifts I have ever been given. And I'm grateful, with a huge helping of humbled.

*on most days

Have you ever heard the song 'Beautiful Mess'? I don't know who sings it or the exact words to that song, but I get it. This life thing ain't always pretty, in fact, it's just plain messy at times.... But somehow, some where along the way, as I take a second and gasp for a deep breath of perspective, I see beauty in the process. When I truly start to understand the depth of forgiveness, the healing in redemption, the freedom in truth and the love behind God's never-ending grace for me, is when my eyes are peeled wide open to the beauty of this thing called life. But I think without drudging through the unkempt, often heart-wrenching trials in my life, I'm not so sure I would see the beauty with the same vividness and humility. If anything, this past year has given me a lot of perspective (Do I sound like an old lady or what?!). Life isn't about what I have or keeping up with the Jones' (unless I allow it to be)... It's about living MY life to the fullest, however it may come at me, in a way that is real, full of love and with dignity.

As I step into this next "new year," I am expecting a LOT of change. What that change will look like, I don't know. But what I do know is that there will be moments that are not easy, there will be uncomfortable situations and times that I really wonder "is all this really necessary?!" And all this so-called perspective that I've been talking about has proven time and time again that, yes, it REALLY is. Growing pains are a means to an end... and in the end, I want to be just who God made me to be, doing just what he made me to do. Knowing that alone, is enough to bring a smile to my face as I sit here thinking about 'what might be' :) in this coming year! I am so thankful for 31. It had a few more bumps in the road than I expected and they caused me to do some self-analyzing to ensure I was moving in the right direction, but it's been well worth the ride and has ignited a passion inside of me to love others better and to seek what is true in every aspect of life!! I couldn't have planned it more strategically for the next season of my life!! Thirty-to-tha-TWO, I don't know how you got here so fast, but I ain't mad atcha! Let's get this party started... TODAY! :)

PS- Thanks to all of my friends and family who are amazing and make my life THAT MUCH BETTER!!! No matter what changes in my life, you all remain a constant...I am so thankful for the love you all give me day in and day out! I hope that I can support and love you, the way you have done for me. Forever grateful and feeling very loved today!